Dear Faith Partner,
Congratulations! By the Grace of God we have now come into 2015! What an awesome time we shared last year. We have come through, a lot of darkness in this natural world, but light in the body of Christ still shines brightly. This should not seem strange to us seeing that Proverbs 4:18-19 (NIV) gives us understanding as it says, “The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble.” Notice I said this Scripture gives us understanding not a reason to rejoice at the stumbling of others. Last year brought about some great challenges in this world, yet great growth and awakening in the life of the body of Christ.
Glorify God In Your Body
As we start this year, I believe it’s so vital that we recognize the importance of glorifying God in our body, this temple that belongs to Him. Keep in mind God calls us to be good stewards of our body, so that the Holy Spirit can express Himself through and to us, as we live our life daily.“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own” I Corinthians 6:19 The enemy will attack when there’s an open door: body, mind or health for example. Keep in mind every negative issue is not always initiated by the devil. Sometimes we are not as responsible as we should be in taking care of this temple. If God is to use us for the long haul, we have to be able to take care of this body as a whole, not just spiritually and mentally, but also physically. Fasting and praying on a regular basis is one of the ways we can do that. That time set apart allows God to speak to us about us.
Let’s look at I Corinthians 6:18 (NIV), “Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.” First of all let me say if we have a way of thinking that’s contrary to God’s Word, it’s an open door for the enemy. No matter what area the wrong thinking may concern; sexual, meeting your own needs, fears, or maintaining your body, it’s an open door for the enemy to enter. If we don’t align our bodies through renewing our mind, then it becomes a stronghold for the enemy. Look at the demon possessed man in Mark 5:1-20, the enemy was using him to destroy his own temple; his tactics have not changed even today. If you don’t think about your body correctly, you are giving an open door to the enemy through abuse, sex, drugs, over eating, not properly exercising, just to name a few.
Read I Corinthians 6:19 again. Notice it’s your body, not your mind, or spirit that is the temple of the Holy Spirit. So it’s your body that houses the Spirit of God, and through your body the Holy Spirit expresses Himself. He is limited in expressing Himself through your body, if your body in always under attack through sickness, and weaknesses; made unfit by distractions. Don’t die prematurely by not taking care of your temple. I Corinthians 3:16-17(NIV) says, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple.” In other words, we need a revelation of the body, who we are and our assignment as the temple in which the Holy Spirit abides.
In John 2:19-21 (NIV) Jesus has a revelation of it, when He “…answered them, “Destroy this temple (this natural body), and I will raise it again in three days.” They replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” But the temple he had spoken of was his body.” This is just an example; throughout Scripture our bodies are identified as the temple of God. We need to get this revelation and meditate on it until it changes the way we see ourselves and our lives and causes us to change what we let go on in our body.
Look at Romans 12:2 (NIV) says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” The emphasis is on the renewing of the mind, not the body, but as you renew your mind, you change your conduct and how you allow your body to be used. Verse 1, in this same chapter says, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.” This verse is saying that you present your “bodies”, not your mind or spirit as a living sacrifice. Your body is the vehicle that transports the Holy Spirit; your body submitted to God.
No one should ever hate his own body, but love, cherish and nourished it, even as the LORD does the church. According to Paul in Ephesians 5:28-29 (NIV), “In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church.” Often, we criticize our body; the shape, eyes or other parts and characteristics, as if we are unpleased with who God made us to be.
Remember, David said in Psalm 139:14 (NIV), “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Do you realize that until you learn to love who you are you will not really love others? Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and it’s a gift fromGod to you. So stop hating yourselves you are to hate the works of the flesh, but not you or your body. God has a purpose for each of us! This year I challenge you to yield your body, soul and spirit over to be used mightily by God. This is your year of great manifestation.
Janice and I are grateful for each of you. 2014 was a great year but we are declaring and decreeing greater for each of you in 2015! Greater in your relationship with God, greater in your marriages, greater in your families, greater in your ministries! Greater!
Your Partner and Friend,
Richard B. Peoples, Sr.
P.S. Don’t forget to mark your calendar and reserve your place at the 2015 Leadership Impartation: Leaders Being Equipped with Grace. It will be held January 27-29, 2015 at the Double Tree by Hilton in Columbus Georgia. I hope to see each of our Covenant Partners there. We are anticipating great move of God as we come together in unity!